Saturday 12 December 2020

Saturday 12th December

Better coverage today with up to four birders on site and apart from an hour or so at lunchtime, birding extended from pre-dawn until after sundown. For this effort, it was an especially ordinary day with no stand-out highlights; the total of 73 species was reasonable, aided by prolonged sunshine punctuated by only a few brief showers. Offshore early morning, 12 Great Crested Grebe, eight Gannet, six Red-throated Diver, three Common Scoter, two Great Northern Diver, two auk sp., a Kittiwake, the ♂ Eider and a Red-breasted Merganser flew south.

On Main Pond, seven Shoveler (4 adult ♂, imm ♂, 2 ♀); four Moorhen, three Water Rail plus another squealing from Entrance Pond; the ♂ domestic Mallard thing, a ♀ Mallard, a trilling Little Grebe and at dusk a mumuration of c.220 Starling.

The well stocked bird feeders attracted many of the tits and finches out of the bushes and woods where totals were 18+ Goldfinch, 12+ Greenfinch, nine Long-tailed Tit, eight Blue Tit, five Chiffchaff, four Great Tit, three Goldcrest, two Chaffinch, ♂ Bullfinch, a Sparrowhawk and a Great Spotted Woodpecker.

On the rising tide, c.1,320 Dunlin, 850+ Oystercatcher, 283 Wigeon, 227 Teal, 140 Grey Plover, 137 Knot, 109 Shelduck, 105 Dark-bellied Brent Goose with two (one obvious, one not) Pale-bellied Brent Goose with them in The Bight; 72 Bar-tailed Godwit, 58 Redshank, 51 Turnstone, 36 Curlew, 26 Ringed Plover, 17 Sanderling, a dozen Common Snipe, another eight Red-breasted Merganser, seven Greenshank, just three Great Black-backed Gull, two suspect captive-bred Mallard; two Mute Swan, two Little Egret, two Grey Heron, a ♀/imm Pintail, a ♀/imm Goldeneye and 'Herbert' the Slavonian Grebe. Also 197 Black-headed Gull and 14 Common Gull alighted on calm waters in the estuary corner at dusk to roost.

Other notable sightings, four Cirl Bunting, three Raven flew SW, three Stonechat, two Meadow Pipit, two single Kingfisher, one again fished rock pools below Langstone Rock and another beside the saltmarsh; two (♂♀) Kestrel, a Green Woodpecker and a Song Thrush near the hide.

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